Hearing Augmentation Part III - Where to Implement and the Challenges Involved
Now that we have uncovered the importance of hearing augmentation in the workplace and discussed the type of technology that’s available, we can unpack when to implement hearing augmentation and the challenges involved.
As discussed in part one of this series to be in compliance with section D3.7 Hearing Augmentation of the National Construction Code (NCC), a hearing augmentation system MUST be provided where an inbuilt amplification system, other than one used for emergency warning, is installed. Current technologies covered under the compliance code are Induction Loops, Infra-red (IR), and Frequency Modulation (FM) systems.
When is hearing augmentation required?
ALL spaces with an installed in-built amplification system:
- AV system and/or interactive whiteboard with inbuilt speakers
- PA, Paging, and/or Music System
- Television with inbuilt speakers (if captions are enabled this requirement may be negated)
When is hearing augmentation NOT required?
ALL spaces with a portable and NON-in-built amplification system:
- Portable PA system
- Mobile display system and/or Television
- EWIS system, if only used for emergency warning and nothing else.
Hearing augmentation coverage
- Hearing Augmentation systems will cover a minimum of 95% of the floor/seated area.
Hearing augmentation audio
- Hearing Augmentation audio mix MUST be un-processed and follow the main loudspeaker feed, and be free of interference, dead spots and noise.
- Signage is required to identify a space with hearing augmentation, including, type of system, area covered, and location of receivers (if used).
Challenges we, as a Consultant face.
The National Construction Code (NCC) legislation specifically relates to Australia and is not applicable in most overseas countries, as such, AV system designs in Australia incorporating hearing augmentation can be more complex and expensive to implement.
As WiFi Hearing Augmentation is not currently recognised under the National Construction Code (NCC) as a solution, it may not be approved by a BCA / Disability consultant. CTS, in conjunction with suppliers and manufacturers of WiFi hearing augmentation systems have been rallying to get the code updated to include this more inclusive technology as a viable solution that also prevents social stigmatisation of the hearing impaired.
Have you considered hearing augmentation in your workplace?
Engage a consultant today to help you navigate the right technology for your environment.